Epic Quest – The PS3 Attitude Review
Lately, Zen Studios’ focus has been on Marvel Pinball and updating the game with plenty of our favorite Marvel characters straight from the comic books. With the release of the Vengeance and Virtue DLC pack now complete, the developers have shifted back to where the whole pinball craze began; Zen Pinball.
Epic Quest is the newest table to grace the platform and with it comes an entire new RPG element that redefines the pinball genre.
As knight in shining armor Max, it is the player’s job to defeat the many enemies that plague the playing field and rescue the damsel in distress. Like in any RPG, Max has his own stats including health, armor, and damage that can be increased by earning experience and leveling up or by finding better equipment in the form of loot. Epic Quest basically plays out like any old fashioned RPG only instead of having a character run around in an open world it’s the metallic ball and flippers that do all the fighting.
Battles are handled by the various ramps scattered across the table. Once a battle is initiated, a timer begins to countdown, signaling when the monster will attack. Depending on the ramps the ball is launched at, players can attack, parry, cast a spell, or dodge. A battle lasts until whichever fighter loses their entire HP or the ball is lost. Players can also aim for the forest towards the middle of the table to increase the time on the countdown.
The battle mechanic for Epic Quest works beautifully. Shooting the ramps to attack and defend makes perfect sense and requires a certain amount of skill and finesse to pull off. If nothing else, it makes victory taste all the sweeter.
While normal pinball tables restart from the beginning once a player loses all three balls, Epic Quest saves experience, stats, and equipment with each game. The longer you play, the greater the rewards. This also means you’ll be facing off against stronger monsters, too. It’s because of all this that Epic Quest is one of the most addicting tables around.
Each playthrough earns you experience, making battles slightly easier and the points slightly greater. You know that this could be the turn that surpasses your previous high score, even if it’s only by a few million. Beating that high score only gives you confidence that you’ll be able to do it again, after all, you’re character is better than he was just moments ago. It’s an endless loop in which hours will fly by in mere moments.
If you’re an owner of Zen Pinball, there is no reason why you shouldn’t get your hands on Epic Quest. It’s a steal at $2.49 and is by far the best table of both Zen Pinball and, dare I say, Marvel Pinball as well. Zen Studios continues to push the limits of what pinball is capable of. Blending an RPG with pinball sounded pretty farfetched when the table was first announced. After extensively playing it, however, I can’t imagine a pinball table without it.